How to cut back on wedding expenses?

by DIY wedding planner on January 28, 2013

How can we keep our wedding under $10,000 or close to it?
Prices just keep going up… and we want to keep the prices low

{ 8 comments… read them below or add one }

Blunt January 28, 2013 at 5:41 am

Cut your guest list. That is the trick to keeping things maneageable.


Rainbrain January 28, 2013 at 6:14 am

Limit the guest list. That is the single biggest expense of most weddings.


Questionman January 28, 2013 at 6:41 am

cut dress list. serve water instead soda. get it at a church make the food. less flowers.
help with mine.


Brenda W January 28, 2013 at 6:59 am

I am doing a lot of things myself or with help of friends & family. A big expense that I am cutting, is doing the invitations myself. I am saving a lot of money. Also, we are doing our own food. We are doing simple foods (ham, chicken, meatballs, potatoes, veggie pasta, salad, rolls etc).
Everyone says cut the guest list, but sometimes you don’t want to do that!


Mrs?B January 28, 2013 at 7:56 am

Try to find a way to do things yourself, or find people you know who can give you a discount or who are talented at doing the things you want.

Some of the things I did to lower our costs:

Made my own invitations
Chose cheaper (but still yummy) food option.
Had a relative who makes nice cakes make ours
Had a family friend who has a dj business be the dj for a discount
found a photographer just starting out who was offering a good deal
did my own flowers, just ordered the flowers and arranged them myself.
had the bridesmaids carry a single flower, made my own bouquet
bought my veil at a craft store
bought a wedding headband on ebay

Our wedding cost a total of $8,500 (not including honeymoon) and it looked like we spent more :)


;-( ;-) January 28, 2013 at 8:08 am

A lot of people do not trust themselves to do things by themselves.
However, doing more yourself will not only save you a lot of money but also allow you and friends to take part in the day.
I suggest you do your own invitations and favors. And if you are feeling a bit adventurous, you can always do your own centerpieces and flower arrangements. Often, this is extremely less expensive but a lot more emotional.
Also, if you have a friend who does really well at cooking, they would probably make your wedding meal for little money or nothing at all. If that doesn’t stir a spark inside of you, you could always hire a food college student. You know an “almost” chef. They would do great and it would give them needed experience. You could do the same for your photographer. Have a relative or a student take your pictures.
Weddings can be very expensive, so planning ahead and choosing which parts you can do on your own can do a lot for your budget.

It’s your wedding. Do what you want.


Diane G January 28, 2013 at 8:55 am

I had a NZ $4,000 budget (USD$2,959.) to cover everything except the honeymoon. That was delayed a month and spent camping over the christmas holiday period, tramping out to a remote lighthouse.
Most of the expensive stuff needed for our wedding was DIY at home… wedding gown, flowers, cakes, stationary.
What I couldn’t do myself, I organised professionals to do and paid for… photographer, hair and make up artist, chef/reception venue, hairdresser, dressmaking tutor, suit hire, veil, garden.

Work out your wedding budget and stick within it. Stay debt free.

You need to make sacrifices all along the way without totally giving up the wedding you dreamed of… it is just on a much smaller scale.

Keep the guest list small. It is hard, I know, but some sacrifices have to be made… somewhere.
Keep the wedding party to a minimum.

Sacrifice the unnecessary things… “the would be nice to haves”
Think outside the commercialised square weddings have been put into.

Make what you can yourself, hire what you can’t make, buy what you can’t hire.

Visit brand name Factory Outlet stores for things like lingerie. If they have sales on, all the better!

Keep a little lined notebook in your handbag to note any items of interest and where the best prices are. It does not have to be an expensive fancy Bridal / Wedding Planner book! A small notebook under $3 does the job just as well.

Keep a watch for mid year and end of year sales.
It is surprising what can be found at good prices, at that time… no impulsive spending! If it is on your list of things needed for your wedding and at a good price, then purchase it. Buy shoes on sale if possible, plain wedding bands can be bought on sale up to 50% off normal price.

Choose naturally beautiful venues for the wedding and reception. Keep what decorations you want simple and beautiful.

Negotiate with the photographer a limited coverage for your wedding for a smaller price. Ask how much it would be if he didnt cover the reception?

Have friends with digital cameras cover the reception. Take a copy of all the photos taken.

Join the local Cake Decorating Guild or Association and learn how to decorate your own cake…
or, ask the ladies to decorate it for you.
Or, you can bake at home and have a cake decorator finish the cake for you. Just give them ample notice, as they can get very busy.

Two weeks before my wedding the president of the local cake decorating guild invited me to join them and learn how to do cake decorating… great idea, but for me it was too late. Making and decorating the cake is a lot of hard work, but so much fun and so rewarding.

Flowers don’t have to be purchased from a florist. They can be bought at flower markets or supermarkets and DIY at home…
Flowers are great fun arranging, but doing them last thing before the wedding… a midnight finish wasn’t such a great idea for the bride to be.

DIY wedding stationary. Great if you have craft and computer skills or know someone who does. Or, you can design yourself and have them printed at a commercial printer. It is a lot of fun (and work) to do it yourself.

The list of things to do is endless and depends on what you are prepared to do yourself.

All the best and congratulations


iloveweddings January 28, 2013 at 9:35 am

~ Have a small guest list

~ Have a small wedding party. This cuts down not only on stress! but on gifts that you need to purchase for the bridal party and on the rehearsal dinner costs.

~ Have a lunch reception instead of a dinner reception.

~ Do as much yourself as you can (invites are a big cost savings if you do them yourself.)

~ DON’T cut down on:
your dress
quality of food

You can totally cut OUT:
~ save the date notices
~ favors
~ limos
~ videographer
~ expensive flowers on every table


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